Like most everyone else, the past two months have been filled with some confusion and a lot of uncertainty for me. The term “new normal” makes my skin tingle. But things have changed, of that we can be sure. As for the Retiree Medical Trust, many routine items have been halted. We haven’t been able to conduct in-person meetings of any kind. Travel by air hasn’t been desirable, so we were forced to cancel our second quarter Board of Trustees meeting. But that is where the irony comes into play.
Despite the virus, the RMT is seeing some pretty large growth. Actually, this might be the biggest jump in the number of participants in the history of the Trust. It is always my pleasure to introduce a new group. I also like to share the association’s logo (if available), as well as the name of the person who was the primary liaison responsible for assisting in the process of research, member education and communication with the RMT throughout the joining process. Basically, the person who made it happen. Here are some of the new associations that will have joined by July 1.
- Seattle Police Guild — Secretary/Treasurer Walt Hayden
- San Leandro PMA — President Luis Torres
- Los Gatos POA — Member-at-Large Wayne Boom
- Marion County LEA — President Jeremy Schwab
- Monterey Park — Former Vice President Lee Norris
With Seattle joining, the RMT is now spread into three contiguous states, including California, Oregon and Washington. Seattle will bring an additional 1,400 participants to the Trust.
Perhaps one of the biggest COVID-19 lessons all of us have learned is that preparedness is truly more than just a 12-letter word. We have been reading about it for weeks. I think most of us will take a page out of that chapter of the history books.
To be certain, being prepared for your retirement begins way before you get to the backside of your career. That includes how you anticipate paying for your post-employment health insurance. Make no mistake, insurance is expensive — very expensive. Once you attain the age of 65, it’s likely you will switch out to Medicare. Unfortunately, the federal government does not cover the entire cost of Medicare. In fact, far from it. If you are married, then your cost will basically double.
It’s tempting to simply ignore the issue while you are young and energetic. A lot like that peeling paint on the house. It doesn’t change a thing on the inside living. But one day down the road, you have to address the paint issue. A lack of prior attention leads to a more costly repair in the end. You simply will have to dig deeper into the pocket for the money.
It’s somewhat the same with the health insurance issue. If you take the time to plan now, then later on you will be in a better monetary position — better prepared. And that is where the PORAC Retiree Medical Trust comes in.
We are a 501(c)(9) trust organization. The federal government recognizes us as such, and allows us to make contributions to a fund earmarked to provide for the payment of a variety of medical insurance premiums and expenses. That includes health, dental, vision, hearing, chiropractic, long term care, etc.
I saved the best part for last. It’s all tax-free. Contributions are on a pre-tax basis. Earnings on the invested money are not taxed. And when you collect the benefits, no taxes are applied and none are due.
We would be happy to meet with your association to provide the details of the RMT program, once Governor Newsom opens the state back up. In the alternative, we can share information by way of a video conference. Or another option would be to go to our website at PORACRMT.org. There’s a lot of good information there. If you find yourself with unanswered questions, feel free to give me a call.
Irony is clearly a big part of life. And sometimes it’s really good stuff! To all of our new associations, welcome! And to everyone, stay safe and keep healthy.